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High-Efficiency Cryo-Thermocells Assembled with Anisotropic Holey Graphene Aerogel Electrodes and a Eutectic Redox Electrolyte

Li, G; Dong, D; Hong, G; Yan, L; Zhang, X; Song, W; (2019) High-Efficiency Cryo-Thermocells Assembled with Anisotropic Holey Graphene Aerogel Electrodes and a Eutectic Redox Electrolyte. Advanced Materials , 31 (25) , Article 1901403. 10.1002/adma.201901403. Green open access

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Abstract

Thermocells, capable of converting temperature-dependent electrochemical redox potentials into electrical power, can harvest waste or low-grade heat in an economical and continuous approach with zero carbon emission. However, the power density and conversion efficiency of thermocells are hindered by a narrow operation window and low ion conductivity of the electrodes, especially in freezing weather conditions. Herein, highly efficient cylindrical thermocells, working in a wide operation window of cold temperatures, are developed. A eutectic electrolyte consisting of formamide and water is formulated with a high ion conductivity, which is retained at a significantly extended lower limit of the operation window from conventional 0 to -40 °C. In parallel, an electrode material based on anisotropic holey graphene aerogel is synthesized with improved ion conductivity, especially at temperatures below 0 °C, due to its aligned graphene sheets and pores. By taking the advantages of both components, the power density and the Seebeck coefficient of a single-cylinder thermocell reaches an exceptionally high value, i.e., 3.6 W m-2 and 1.3 mV K-1 , respectively. Moreover, assembled thermocells in series packaging substantially enhance the voltage of the open-circuit, i.e., from 140 mV (1-cylinder thermocell) to 2.1 V (15-cylinder thermocells).

Type: Article
Title: High-Efficiency Cryo-Thermocells Assembled with Anisotropic Holey Graphene Aerogel Electrodes and a Eutectic Redox Electrolyte
Location: Germany
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1002/adma.201901403
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1002/adma.201901403
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: Anisotropic graphene aerogels, cryo-thermocells, eutectic electrolytes, holey graphene
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences > Div of Surgery and Interventional Sci
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences > Div of Surgery and Interventional Sci > Department of Surgical Biotechnology
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10073261
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